Jack Harold Paar (May 1, 1918 – January 27, 2004) was an American radio and television comedian and talk show host, best known for his stint as host of The Tonight Show from 1957 to 1962. Time magazine's obituary noted that: "His fans would remember him as the fellow who split talk show history into two eras: Before Paar and Below Paar."
Paar was born in Canton, Ohio, the son of Howard and Lillian M. Paar. He moved with his family to Jackson, Michigan, 30 miles south of Lansing, as a child. As a child he had a stuttering problem which he conquered. He contracted tuberculosis when he was 14, and left school at 16.
He first worked near home as a radio announcer at WIBM in Jackson and later as a humorous disc jockey at Midwest stations, including WJR in Detroit, WIRE in Indianapolis, WGAR in Cleveland and WBEN in Buffalo. In his book P.S. Jack Paar, he recalled doing utility duty at WGAR in 1938 when Orson Welles broadcast his famous simulated alien invasion, War of the Worlds over the CBS network (and affiliate WGAR). Attempting to calm possible panicked listeners, Paar announced, "The world is not coming to an end. Trust me. When have I ever lied to you?"